Your mental health is just as important as anything else in your life. But how do you act like it is? How do you prioritize it?
That’s a question that doesn’t have a simple answer. For some people, their mental health is always a top priority. For others, it falls by the wayside in favor of other commitments. Some may not realize their mental health is suffering, while others struggle to know what to do when it is.
There’s no right or wrong way to prioritize your mental health, so try something – try a few things. Make 2023 your year to find out what makes you feel better!
1. Practice Self-Care
It’s no secret that self-care is important. But what exactly is self-care? Self-care is any activity that you do deliberately to take care of your physical, mental, or emotional health.
There are countless ways to practice self-care, but first, you must make time for it every day. The best way to do this is by getting up 10 minutes earlier so you can have some time to yourself before starting your day.
You can spend this time doing anything that makes you feel good. But keep in mind that exercise is one of the most effective self-care ways to improve mental health. Make sure you’re getting enough exercise each day, such as by walking, even if it’s just for 20 minutes.
Whatever form of self-care you choose, make it a priority. When you make time for self-care, you’re not only taking care of your body and mind, but you’re also investing in your future well-being.
2. Watch Your Diet & Sugar Intake
Did you know that certain foods trigger body inflammation and adversely affect your brain?
Sugar is a common culprit in both of these categories. Regularly eating too much sugar doesn’t only contribute to physical health problems but can lead to issues with memory and learning, mood swings, and other mental health conditions like anxiety and depression.
To avoid this, be mindful of your sugar intake and limit yourself to no more than 24 grams daily. In addition to sugar, certain foods can contribute to inflammation and should be avoided if you want to maintain good mental health. These include processed meats, refined carbohydrates, and unhealthy
Eating a diet rich in whole grains, vegetables, and healthy fats like olive oil can help reduce inflammation and support brain health.
3. Set Healthy Boundaries
It’s hard to know when to say no, especially when it comes to things that may benefit us in the long run. Setting boundaries can be even harder when we’re used to saying yes to everything.
Still, setting healthy boundaries around your time, energy, and others is important to avoid burnout and feeling overwhelmed. So think about what you need to feel your best.
Do you need more alone time? Or more with friends but less with others? Whatever it is, communicate your needs clearly to others and stick to them for yourself.
4. End Each Day with Gratitude
Even on the worst day, there is always something to find gratitude for.
Gratitude has been linked to increased happiness and well-being, so it is worth focusing on the positive. To prioritize your mental health this year, end each day by brainstorming a few things you are grateful for.
If you struggle with this, it’s okay. After all, the last thing most of us want to do when we feel low is force ourselves to be happy.
But here’s the thing: bringing to mind a handful of things you appreciate doesn’t require us to feign or force happiness. In fact, a gratitude practice is a few moments where you can be most authentic about what keeps you going – what makes you smile. It’s acknowledging what brings you joy or peace that brings more of it – it cultivates a mindset that brings more happiness down the road.
So even if all that comes to mind is the support of a friend or of the soft, firm mattress beneath you, let yourself be grateful.
5. Reach out for Support Beyond Medication
When it comes to mental health, medication is not always the answer. Many other options can be just as effective, if not more so.
One option is TMS therapy, a non-invasive treatment that stimulates the brain with magnetic pulses to improve mood. It’s been shown to treat depression effectively and is a safe and well-tolerated treatment option.
Another option is Spravato, a nasal spray that contains a molecule similar to ketamine. It’s an effective FDA-approved option for treatment-resistant depression available by prescription that can help you see results within a few weeks.
If you’re looking for Spravato treatment in Pearland, TX, our team is here to help put together your treatment plan so you can find renewed hope and wellness in 2023 and beyond.